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Blog Post
10/19/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
In years past, a profit result like United HealthCare's 26% increase in the third quarter would spike the stock price. Not so on Tuesday, because investors are worried that insurance companies' profit rocket will slow down next year as health reform requirements kick in. That, in a nutshell, is why the insurance industry is spending tens of...
Blog Post
10/11/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
The passage of a law means nothing to the lobbying industry. It only means refocusing on regulators, and if that fails, changing the law that was passed. Lobbyists for health insurance brokers are in the middle stage: demanding that the White House protect their big sales commissions--up to 20s on each policy-- by crippling a key part of the law....
News Release
10/8/2010
CONTACT CONTACT: Carmen Balber, 202-629-3043; or Jamie Court, 310-392-0522, ext 327
Woman Left With $450K in Medical Bills Joins Call for President to Enforce New Consumer Protections Washington, DC -- Consumer Watchdog called on President Obama to reject waivers requested by junk health insurance plans, including one that left Dana Christensen with $450,000 in medical debt, that would allow them to evade minimum benefit...
Blog Post
9/23/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
The insurance industry is going directly to the White House in its latest attempt to evade a key portion of the health reform law that would force them to operate more efficiently. But instead of making the argument directly, the industry is speaking through state insurance commissioners that are either friendly to insurance companies or cowed by...
Blog Post
9/8/2010
Posted by Carmen Balber
Janet Adamy in the Wall Street Journal reports (subscription necessary) that health insurers across the country are using the health reform law as an excuse to justify their latest round of rate hikes for individual insurance policies. Aetna, one of the nation's largest health insurers, said the extra benefits forced it to seek rate increases...
Blog Post
9/2/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
Corporations are shoving all of the increased cost of worker healthcare, and more, onto their employees, says a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation. We already knew that companies are sitting on loads of cash while refusing to hire back laid-off workers, so this is just salt on the wound. At the same time, corporations are lobbying like...
Blog Post
8/25/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
At the shoe store, 40% off qualifies as at least pretty good. So why does regulators' approval of new, lower rates by Blue Cross of California not feel like victory? There are lots of reasons, but first is that the revised Blue Cross rate hikes are still in double digits, averaging 14% and as high as 20%, while average wages are still falling....
Blog Post
8/17/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
The worst definitely didn't happen in Seattle. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners deferred the worst insurance industry demands for weakening the implementation of health care reform. For a body so closely linked to the insurance industry, that counts as real progress. Credit is due to the state-level experts who wrote proposed...
Blog Post
8/12/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
It's going to be consumer advocates vs. a large scrum of health insurance company lobbyist in Seattle for the next several days at the summer meeting of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. In advance of that, we've asked for an investigation of what insurers are up to. The NAIC is writing proposed regulations to govern important...
Blog Post
8/11/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
There are days when the idea of private health insurance companies running health reform are more ludicrous than others. Today, we find that health insurance CEOs are raking in ever-higher compensation--up to $110 million a year for one retiring CEO. This is obviously where a lot of our ever-rising premium dollars are going. The lead on the LA...